The Downsman Bowls Club History

Formed initially in 1978 out of The Downsman Public House in Southgate, publican Dennis McCready showed interest in a bowls match between his pub and other pubs in Crawley. At that time Paul Smith was selling tickets for the public bowls green at Southgate Playing fields as well as tickets for the public tennis courts there. Dennis suggested to Paul that he wanted to have a bowls match between The Downsman pub and another local pub and asked Paul how much it would cost to run such an event. Paul advised it would be about £80 which was way beyond his budget at that time. Eventually a fee of £20 was agreed and The Downsman Bowls Club had effectively been formed.

Why is the Downsman Bowls Club now based at West Green and why does it incorporate The Crawley Blind and Crawley Disabled Bowlers?

Why is The Downsman Bowls Club badge design as it is? Have you seen the framed badge history montage in the clubhouse?

In a brief conversation with Paul & Val Smith I realise there is a lot if history, heartache and passion that has brought The Downsman Bowls Club to where it is today. I am hoping to interview Paul, Val and others to share some of the fascinating details and the sequence of events bringing us to where we are today and where the club hopes to be in the next 5 years or so.

The one thing that has struck me since joining The Downsman Bowls Club was summed up on our first visit to an Information Evening back in March 2015. As Chairman at that time, Paul stood up and welcomed all members and guests to "The Friendly Bowls Club". For Jennie and I, that brief introduction confirmed this was the club we wanted to join. We have not been disappointed. 

Watch this space for some enlightening background to how The Downsman has got to where it is and some of the stories and characters involved to date. Next year brings up 40 years existence for The Downsman Bowls Club so let's make it a RUBY celebration for all concerned.

Best regards.........Geoff Short (gshort1946@gmail.com)